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This is what a blue-green sunset looks like on Mars

This is what a blue-green sunset looks like on Mars

Look closely, because this is nothing like the sunset you see on Earth.

On July 4, 2023, the Perseverance rover pointed its camera toward the hazy horizon and captured an image of a sunset on Mars, creating a blue-green sky on the red planet — as follows:

Or this one – taken by the Mars rover Curiosity in April 2015:

This blue-green color is due to many things, including…

  • Mars is farther from the Sun than Earth, so the Red Planet receives as much or less sunlight as we do (about half).
  • Mars has a thinner atmosphere than Earth, and moreover, Present in different proportions a ingredients.
  • The atmosphere of Mars is rich in dust grains containing iron dioxide, which filter out the red color at sunset and allow the blue color to pass through (during the day, the opposite practically happens).
Simply put: sunlight interacts differently with the Martian atmosphere.

The difference between terrestrial and Martian sunsets is perhaps best illustrated by the following image:

(source: Science Alert Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/PDS/USGS/Damia Bouic)

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